Randome Hite Report #9 - Double the Fun!

So, as you may know, I do a series called Random Hite Report where I choose 1 page at random from either The Hite Report: A National Study of Female Sexuality or from The Hite Report on Male Sexuality, and I transcribe that page here for you. Both these books are incredibly interesting, poignant reads about how men and women (in their own words) experience sex, orgasms, love and relationships. I think everyone should read these. The detail and intimacy is captivating.

In fact, I liked the page I picked today from the Female Hite Report so much that I made the unprecedented choice of transcribing 2 pages (that's right I said 2!). These were from the chapter "Intercourse" in the subsection "Clitoral Stimulation By Hand During Intercourse." These are all answers to a question asking women to detail ways that they were able to orgasm during intercourse (obviously, these were answers from women who could orgasm during intercourse and who did so by using manual stimulation). I just thought it was really interesting to hear the specific ways these women have found to get theirs while a penis was inside their junk. These are the kinds of depictions of sex we don't see on TV, movies or porn, but that are clearly happening somewhere in the real world. Oh, and p.s. the Hite Report is one of the few female orgasm surveys out there that makes sure to clearly understand what women mean when they say they can orgasm during intercourse...does that mean they use a hand, or grind the clit against something, or are they actually saying they orgasm from the penis stimulating the vagina? Too often, that's not part of the survey.

The Hite Report: A National Study of Female Sexuality. Dell NY 1976. p292-293

...right away so that it could really be rubbed. I have decided that it's much better to do it with my hand."
    "During intercourse, sideways, I place my hand around the part of the penis that is not in the vagina, massage it, and at the same time create clitoral stimulation and orgasms occur!"
    "My partner is lying on his back, i am on top of him with his penis inside my vagina. I am kneeling with my upper body raised up away from his chest so that my breasts are hanging down in such a way that he is able to lift his head and suck on my nipples. One of his hands is down between us, and his fingers are directly stimulating my clitoris and the area around it. With his other hand, he is feeling other areas of my body, especially my bottom. Meanwhile, I am free to move in whatever way gives me the most pleasure."
    "I can't squeeze my legs together during regular intercourse. That is still necessary for me to make myself come. And I never have the same sort of violently physical orgasm with vaginal penetrationwith the penis that I do with direct clitoral stimulation. I'm not even sure if i come. I get a great sensation of pleasure, but it never peaks like it does the other way. I wish it did. I'd love to come right when he does without any extra attention. The only we've been able to achieve this is if he lies on his back, and I on mine, with my rear on his pelvis. In this manner, his penis can be inside me, but my clitoris is free to be stroked by him and my stomach and leg muscles are unrestricted so they can act freely in the often violent spasmodic way they do when I'm coming. I would love to hear from someone who is able to have a super orgasm during intercourse without any direct clitoral manipulation. I suppose it's possible. I wonder if I could 'learn how' the way I've 'learned' how the other way.
    "I have orgasms during intercourse only by masturbating simultaneously. While I'm doing this I don't like my partner to move around too much because it's distracting."
    "I have often had a desire to have an orgasm with penetration and have tried to have my partner penetrate me, lying on my side across him, and stimulate  my clitoris at the same time, but this doesn't work too well, because sometimes he can't hold his erection and also I have the problem of having to keep my legs tightly together in order to climax."
    "Positions and movement are better or worse for all sorts of things, both physical and psychological, but they have never yet led to direct enough clitoral stimualtion to lead to orgasm for me without a helping hand."
    "Intercourse is okay providing some form of clitoral stimulation is continued during intercourse. If we are in such a position that makes penis/clitoral contact impossible or at least impractical, then my mate would need only to to use a free hand to manipulate my clitoris."
    "My most beautiful sexual experience ever was one afternoon I spent with my lover. He sat with his penis in my vagina while I was lying down, and he vibrated me from one orgasm to another while pushing himself in and out. There was so much love coming out of him. I'll never forget it."
    "I am on top, sitting up, during intercourse. He touches my clitoris llightly with his finger, hand or both hands, in a way that I can move against it as I want to."
    "I have not found a lasting position that will give me maximum clitoral stimulation during intercourse. Direct stimulation with a hand is necessary to orgasm."
    "I enjoy entry from behind so I can stimulate my own clitoris at the same time."
    "We have intercourse with slow, writhing movements on both of our parts, pressing my labia around his penis while my hands caress his stroking penis, or while I masturbate and/or close my legs tightly together."
    "If I am feeling especially 'horny' and feel the need to be penetrated, then intercourse itself is good. But physically, it is satisfying only if accompanied by clitoral stimulation. I don't feel overly excited by vaginal penetration. Psychologically, it can be exciting by just the thought of what the man is doing to you and at times I'll experience a physical excitement with is a feeling that is not as intense or high-pitched as clitoral stimulation, but definitely a sexual feeling in the vagina during penetration. Intercourse without clitoral stimulation has never led to orgasm (so far for me, anyway)."


In Bed With Married Women, or Where Science, Sex and the Ladies Is

Well, you just never know what you'll find over at In Bed With Married Women, now do you? It might be wearable vaginas, or the Onahole, Dinosaur Erotica, or maybe - just maybe, it'll be Science, Sex and the Ladies, in a fantastically titled post How to Make a Woman Come--Even If You Are That Woman. AKA Things I Learned from Science, Sex and the Ladies . I quite like the title.

This is dinosaur erotica - just in case you thought it didn't exist

Here's a little snippet of her post, but you should go on over there to check it out fully. Thanks to Jill Hamilton for watching the movie and writing this up. She's a pretty funny gal. Plus, event though she probably wouldn't use the term Orgasm Equality Movement, but she's certainly supported it in the past.

I learned all kinds of things from Science, Sex, and the Ladies, up to and including:
--I couldn't tell a whit of difference between the photos of the Aroused Clitoris and Unaroused Clitoris (possible future lesbian lovers: you have been forewarned.) 
--Women have their strongest orgasms by their own hand, second strongest with someone else's hand, and weakest via fucking and the frustratingly indirect stimulation of a penis rubbing-near-but-not-quite-exactly-where-you-need-it. 
 --Contrary to popular belief, women don't take forever to come. Women come as quickly as easily as men, given the right stimulation. Men would also take forever to come if they were only being stimulated by, say, someone diligently rubbing their pubic hair.
My favorite part of the film depicted scenes of people engaged in various forms of sexual congress--a blow job, fucking, etc...--when a cheery actress would walk into the each scene and advise the female participant to "Rub one out!" to enhance her experience. It was fun, breezy and educational--like a particularly racy episode of The Electric Company.

I actually do wish this was the sort of stuff young people saw. And, while I'm at it, I wish more sex scenes depicted women being stimulated realistically, in the way that women actually need to be stimulated, so that women would no longer have to think they were somehow broken, doing it wrong or hadn't yet found the proper dick.


Rocks and Glass Houses - Skeptic Ink Article Ain't So Skeptical

Charlie sent this article to me (The Clitoris Revealed and How io9 Got It Wrong) from Skeptic Ink. The author (Edward Clint) was lambasting a recent i09 article on its terrible coverage of a 2009 study that used a sonogram to look at the full clitoral complex (there's a lot of erectile clitoral tissue below the skin). The study linked an area where part of the clitoral complex got cozy against the vagina during penetration to an area the 5 women in the study felt was a pleasurable one in the vagina. The researchers suggested this may be the "g-spot" (as in the "g-spot" may actually just be the area where the root of the clitoral complex butts up against the vagina during penetration and not be some piece of anatomy within the vagina). There is a suggestion that this "g-spot" is linked to the "vaginal orgasm" the 5 women in the study claim to have, but there is no specific causal connection asserted in the study's conclusion. 

Edward Clint rightly details how the io9 article covering the study is characteristically silly in the way media interpretations of scientific studies always seem to be, and I appreciated that he pointed that out. In fact, I loved that this article pointed out a lot of things about scientific reporting that annoy me (not telling the full story, over exaggeration, only picking out the parts that seem exciting), but then at the end of the article, there is a section called "The vaginal orgasm and the G-spot debate: We can all stop caring now," and that's where it all goes wrong. 

Frankly, I don't think that Clint (and he's not alone - honestly his tone and arguments are very much the status quo) has a good handle on some important aspects of this subject, Let me tackle the larger issue first.

An orgasm caused by stimulation of something inside the vagina (a Vaginally Induced Orgasm or VIO),  has never actually been recorded. I know it sounds crazy, but it's true. It doesn't exist in scientific record. (I explain that further HERE and HERE if you are interested).  Most people writing about g-spot/vaginal orgasms don't know or completely ignore this. They, quite wrongly, take for granted that VIO's exist, and I think it twists the entire picture of female sexual response into a confused mess that is not helpful to anyone. Take for instance Clint's discussion about the "vaginal vs. clitoral orgasm debate." 
In the first half of the 20th century, notions of vaginal vs. clitoral orgasm took hold (thank Freud, who coined the term vaginal orgasm), along with the ignorant and sexist notions that women incapable of the “vaginal” orgasm were “frigid” and that penis-vagina sex was the only source of orgasms that counted. This lead some feminists to adopt the opposite and politically-valenced position that the vagina was irrelevant to pleasure, and that the vaginal orgasm was a lie. Just in case you think I am overstating, feminist Anne Koedt wrote in 1970, It has also been known that women need no anesthesia inside the vagina during surgery, thus pointing to the fact that the vagina is in fact not a highly sensitive area. (This quote was repeated to me in a 2012 gender studies classroom by a professor, quite seriously) This is why it’s good to remember the opposite of wrong is not necessarily right and that it’s a bad idea to confuse facts with moral values: facts can change. 
He seems to play Anne Koedt as some crazy ideologue, but she is not. Koedt was part of a larger feminist campaign that emerged from the then recent Master's and Johnson physiology of orgasm research. M&J's research described how there was no evidence of VIOs and showed how stimulation of the clitoral glans caused female orgasm. That research is, to this day, still relevant and foundational. Let me be clear. Orgasms caused by stimulation of the clitoral glans have been described, documented, and there is a clear understanding of what is needed to get them and who is capable of having them. Orgasms from vaginal stimulation have not been documented or described and there is no clear understanding of what is needed to have them or who is capable of having them. 

Koedt's statement that the vagina has very little sensitivity to touch and that the vaginal orgasm is a lie is not just a willy-nilly opposing reaction to Freud. It is what the science says (this was true in 1970 and still today). Freud's theories, including the "vaginal orgasm" that he so kindly birthed into this world, are just some completely untested ideas a famous dude had that really, really caught on - that's all. To pose Freud's bullshit against Anne Koedt's article, an article that is backed up by good science, is just plain silly.

Even after the G-spot was "discovered" and brought into the public eye in 1982, there still has been no causal connection documented in a lab between something in the vag being stimulated and an orgasm. From the G-spot's 1982 "coming-out,", we did learn that there are prostate-like ducts surrounding the urethra that protrude out from the vaginal wall when excited (this is what I would define as the g-spot), and that when there is sufficient pressure and stimulation of that area, some women ejaculate (which is different from orgasm) through their urethra. That is the only type of sexual release caused by vaginal stimulation that has been documented, and yet strangely this article and almost all like it ignore this very real and concrete quality of the g-spot. Instead the focus is on its possible part in a type of orgasm, that frankly, may not even exist. 

Another issue I have is that Clint confuses two different " clit vs. vag debates." There is a debate about whether a vaginal orgasm exists at all. This is the debate I'd like to have and the debate that was in question with Anne Koedt and similar feminists of the time. Then there is the debate about whether VIOs are caused by something actually in the vaginal structure  vs. the idea that VIOs are caused by indirect stimulation of the deep clitoral roots through the walls of the vagina. Clint sort of lumps these two together as the clit vs. vag debate, but they are actually quite different. The first follows what is scientifically known and simply sees no evidence for a VIO. The second assumes that VIOs obviously exist and is simply asking whether the clitoral legs stimulated through vaginal penetration is the cause or the vag itself. 
The modern research tells us that everyone is right! Or, everyone is wrong, however you’d like to parse it, because all of the parts are important. And right on cue, both “sides” of the G-spot debate have claimed immediate victory with the anti side saying “See, it’s just clitoral!” and the pro side saying “see! it is real, and just where we said!”. The correct answer is, researchers aside, who cares? 
What if the orgasm some women experience during vaginal intercourse is caused by the internal clitoris? Does changing the mere label and invisible mechanism for the event from “vaginal” to “internal clitoral” change a thing about the event for anybody involved? Does it somehow change moral arguments about the political equality of women? I don’t think that it does. Isn’t it cool if it’s a fact that the G-spot that some women report actually is the spot where the clitoris contacts the anterior vaginal wall?
This is annoying to me because the very important debate about whether vaginal orgasms even exist, the debate he unfairly poo-pooed as just a feminist reaction to Freud's nonsense, is further being pushed into irrelevant obscurity because he's incorrectly lumping it with a debate about which undefined mechanism causes an undocumented, not understood, orgasm that may not even exist. "Is it the thing in the vag we can't find?" vag side says, "or the penis pushing against the wall of the vagina - which then pushes on the surrounding tissue - which then pushes on the clitoral leg that causes VIO?" clit side asks. Framed this way, Clint's right, who cares? It probably doesn't exist anyway. (and P.S. when it's said that the clit has more nerve endings than the entire penis, it is meant that the clitoral glans, the part on the outside, has that many nerves, not the whole clitoral structure. I can't find anything that says how nervy the inner clit legs are, but I think it's fair to say it's a hell of a lot less nervy than the glans. The inner legs engorge with blood when aroused, that seems to be their claim to fame - not intense nerviness). 

My other major problem with Clint's last 3 paragraphs is a little more complicated. You see, although I've already pointed out that a VIO is neither understood nor documented, and that wondering which part (the inner clit or the vag) causes these VIOs is kinda useless since we can't even describe the thing they supposedly cause, the idea of a VIO is still incredibly important to tons of women and their partners. Women and men hear it exists, and the details of what exactly may cause it are a matter of great interest. A quick scan through advice columns, magazine articles, books and the internet would easily show how interested people are in this. It shouldn't be taken lightly that women are in search of better information about these types of orgasms, and I was bothered by the flippant way Clint speaks about the level of actual interest non-research people might have in the specific details of how a VIO might be achieved. 

Frankly, I think Clint underestimates the amount of worry, confusion and frustration women (and men) carry about VIOs. Just think about it. These VIOs are over-abundantly depicted in porn, romance novels, and everywhere else sex is depicted. They result from the most common of sex acts - vaginal-penile intercourse. They are low maintenance (just get banged!), supposedly wildly amazing orgasms, yet only 20 to 30% of women say they can experience these elusive trophies of female sexuality. Why wouldn't people hang on every tidbit of information about them? People are not stupid, and they know that understanding these detailed mechanisms are the key to both learning and teaching how to achieve VIOs.(Does the inner clitoral leg really butt up against the vagina to cause these wildly elusive VIO's or is there another stand-alone piece of anatomy some women have that makes them unique and lucky vag-gasm princesses?!? Are all women's bodies capable of VIOs, or just some? What is the anatomy difference among the haves and have nots? Is it the sex position or the dude's junk size that makes it possible?). Just telling people that it's a vague area that can be reached through the vagina is not enough. People certainly want more. I think it's ridiculous, given how much of an importance our culture puts on VIOs to say, who cares? 

So, again, my larger issue with this article and the g-spot/vaginal orgasm debate in general is that the discussion begins from the assumption that there is something that causes these vaginal orgasms, but no one (even quite skeptical people) thinks to say, "hey, wait....what exactly is a VIO? Oh, there is no real definition? It's never actually been physically documented? Why is that? Hmmm, maybe it's kinda problematic to be looking for the cause of something that is not actually defined." 

Having straight-faced discussions about which possible anatomical configuration causes vaginally induced orgasms is as gross to me as discussing what causes women's intuition. Yeah, people talk about it as if it exists, and women will even tell you that they have it, but it is not defined. It may not even exist, and there is no way someone can identify the cause of something when no one knows what exactly that something is. This is pretty basic stuff, and critical people should be looking at and talking about this debate differently. In the future, I would love to see skeptics be as thorough and skeptical about female orgasm as they are with evolution, religion, and global warming.

***I posted this in a comment on the Skeptic Ink article and the author Edward Clint has been totally cool, saying "As this whole website is about skepticism, we delight in thoughtful criticism," which I totally appreciate. If good discussion takes place I'll post a follow-up.
*****UPDATE: Edward Clint and I have agreed to a bit of a debate. He will post his replies with all necessary links on his blog, and I will post mine on this blog. You can find his reply at http://www.skepticink.com/incredulous/2014/07/08/orgasm/ and I will be posting mine soon. Enjoy! response
****My Response to Edward Clint's response is HERE


Lady Clitoris and Lord Peter DeCocke at the Indy Pride Parade!

This past Saturday Science, Sex and the Ladies proudly marched in the Indianapolis Pride Parade. We were there to promote our movie, to promote Orgasm Equality for All, and most importantly in support of the Indy LGBT community. Was it fun? Yes, sir. Did we get a lot of love from the parade viewers? You know it! Did our parade formation include the esteemed couple, Lady Clitoris and Lord Peter DeCocke? Why yes it did. Here are some facts about our Indy Pride Parade adventure.

Most of our Science, Sex and the Ladies crew for the Indy Pride Parade (some were hiding)

1 Lord Peter DeCocke became nauseous about an hour before the walking began, but heroically pulled his shit together at the last minute and wowed the crowd.

2 Peter DeCock is an actual name of somebody that works at my day job company. It is a large company, so I don't know this man, but I found him by looking up dirty sounding words for fun in the company address book. I also found Thomas Van Ass and one of my all time faves, Virginie Assmat.

3 Science, Sex and the Ladies threw out 1260 pieces of candy including Sour Patch Kids, Starbursts, Twizzlers, Gobstoppers to the spectacular spectators along the route

4 The temperature was around 80 F, which was not as hot as were were fearing. However, even with a nicer temp, you'd think it would get pretty hot in old-timey clothes, but it actually wasn't too bad.

Lady Clitoris and Lord Peter DeCocke at the Indy Pride Parade 2014

5 We were marching behind Cummins, which is a large company headquartered in Columbus, Indiana, but it also sounds kinda dirty. Oh, and all the Cummins folks seemed real nice.

The AnC Crew with our ab fab Costumer!

Lady Clitoris posing with some of the excellent ladies of burlesque here in Indy


Betty Dodson Endorses Science, Sex and the Ladies!

So...Science, Sex and the Ladies received an endorsement statement from Betty Dodson - which is, ummm, awesome, like really awesome.

Betty Dodson

If you read this blog regularly, you are certainly aware of Betty. I talk about her and her website with Carlin Ross fairly frequently, and I even did an interview with her a few years back. If, for some reason, you are not familiar, then I really feel you should get on this Dodson train. Seriously, of all the possible people out there in the world that could possibly take a look at my movie, and say, "why yes, this information, these assertions do make sense, and yes this topic is important," Betty Dodson is by far my first choice, and here's why. I think this woman knows what the hell she's talking about when it comes to female orgasm, and I would absolutely not say that about all the people out there giving advice on the subject - not by a long shot. 

For me, what makes the difference with Betty Dodson is experience, plain and simple. It's not just that she's in her 80's and lived through all the changes/lack of changes that happened during the sexual revolution and all the years since. It's not just that she's run revolutionary, hands-on, face-to-face group classes on masturbation  for over 3 decades or that she wrote a ground-breaking book on masturbation. It's not only that she has had formal Sexology training and has been discussing sex, orgasm, and masturbation with other sex experts and sexually experienced people for decades. It's also very much that she has an incredible, diverse sexual history...orgies, casual group sex or mutual masturbation with friends, random hook-ups, long-term monogamous partners, teaching classes where she coaches women as they masturbate to orgasm. She has seen, given, received, and discussed more orgasms and under more circumstances than you can shake a stick at. (Seriously, her sexual memoir is a must read, if you ask me) I mean, she's seen so much and experienced so much, that when she makes a point, we need to listen. 

The unique mix of qualities that is Betty Dodson; her immense sexual experience, her curiosity and fearless interest in sharing her knowledge, her happenstance of living during the 60's sexual revolution, her personal connections in the sex activism world, and her book knowledge about sexology, don't come about very often. There are tons of sexologists, sex advisers, and sex researchers out there now. Some are thoughtful, interested people largely doing good for the world. Some are not. I'd bet my house though, that not one of the sexperts out there - the famous ones, the respected ones, the heavily degreed ones, and the ones that are quoted in every internet or magazine sex column - not one has near the diverse, hands-on knowledge base of authentic sexual and orgasmic behavior as Betty Dodson. 

So, my point is that I have immense respect for her opinion. I was downright giddy when she actually took the time to watch this crazy movie I sent her and then when she agreed to do a statement about it for our press kit. I will be forever grateful. Here it is.

People rarely acknowledge there's a problem in our culture with how we understand female orgasm. Addressing this lack of knowledge is incredibly important to the well-being of women and their partners. After teaching women about orgasm through the practice of masturbation for over 3 decades, I've seen very little has changed for women when it comes to having orgasms during sex with a partner. This never ending number of women coming to me have no idea how to enjoy orgasms alone or with a partner.  
Thanks to the absence of any decent sex education,  both girls and boys rely on hardcore porn to learn about sex. But porn is basically entertainment for men that features fast dramatic screaming female orgasms from men with large penises penetrating vaginas or anuses and withdrawing to show "the cum shot." Today, even young men are becoming MORE insecure about penis size and young girls think they should be able to have orgasms from vaginal penetration.  
Science, Sex and the Ladies does a remarkable job of connecting the dots between stereotypical female sexual inadequacies and the incorrect assumption that women can orgasm from vaginal penetration. The vast number of women faking orgasms allows men to believe that women are having orgasms from a penis thrusting inside their vaginas. As a result, women experience very few orgasms for the amount of sex they're having while society acts as if this is okay but it's not. To correct this problem, we must begin by re-instating the clitoris as a woman's primary organ of pleasure .  
Science, Sex and the Ladies  is saying the things about female orgasm that society needs to hear but continues to resist. This cultural misunderstanding about female sexual response causes suffering for both women and men. Women do not have less interest in enjoying sex and pleasure. Vaginal orgasms do not exist in scientific records without additional clitoral stimulation. Therefor it's obvious that a larger number of women are faking orgasm than we've realized. Although sex is all over the media, any talk about the clitoris and authentic female sexual response leads to censorship across the board; any statements about calling bullshit on vaginal orgasms brings about a mix of complacency, indignation or anger. Our culture needs to start dealing with these problems. Once both men and women enjoy orgasms alone and together we can end the war between the sexes.  
Science, Sex and the Ladies is a must see for people everywhere. I support this movie 100%.
-Betty Dodson 6/2014


How Our F'd Up Sexual Culture Slowly Breaks Us Ladies And Our 'Gasms

So, as you know, the movie I made and I are both proponents of clearly understanding that the clitoris and not the vagina is responsible for ladygasms, and we're also a proponent for ladies jiggling their own junk in order to get off - either while alone or with a partner. I think a cultural mentality that took those two things into consideration could do very well for the state of female sexuality in general. However, individuals are a different story. I want to remind everyone from time to time that I am not saying and would never say that these things I advocate through the movie and the Orgasm Equality Movement are some kind of cure-all for what ails each and every woman sexually. My focus is really on changing how our culture depicts, teaches, and understands female orgasm - and hoping that makes a better environment for all women to explore and experience their individual sexuality.

On that note, I was talking with a friend recently about their sense that even though in research studies women reliably orgasm as quickly and easily as men during masturbation, it seems off somehow. It seems like women really do have a little more trouble and take a little more time orgasming with a partner than men do - even if women are stimulating themselves during the act. It seemed to my friend that my movie may be overlooking something else in the nature of women that makes it harder for them to orgasm. I think this is a really interesting point to consider, and below is a sort of altered version of my thoughts on the subject I wrote back to that friend. I hope you enjoy. 

P.S. Thanks to that friend for letting me talk so much. Cheers to all the ladies out there  (and frankly, I think that includes all of us) who have been broken in so many small ways by our sexual culture, and thanks to the men out there who really try to listen and understand where we are coming from, because honestly, I think this is one thing that is probably pretty hard for a dude to fully comprehend. 

My thoughts to my friend....
I know different women have worries and problems that go beyond simply lacking the knowledge and permission to actually stimulate the area of her body (the clitoral glans area) most likely to cause orgasm during a sexual act with her partner(s). However, this lack of knowledge and lack of empowerment is an incredibly huge problem, and the one the movie focuses on. So, I do really believe that giving women the knowledge and permission to "rub one out" makes a lot of sense. Masturbating (however she does this) oneself to orgasm is the most reliable way for a woman to orgasm while with a partner. Intercourse isn't a good bet, and having another person orally or manually stimulate is pretty unreliable - especially at first.
There simply is no reason to believe that women are somehow naturally less capable of orgasm. The evidence just doesn't point to it. However, I don't disagree that there is something else there that makes it harder for women to orgasm in partnered sexual situations, but I think there is a deeper more insidious issue that comes into play more than one would hope. I don't imagine most people have thought about it the way I'm going to speak about it, including many women, but I think it needs to be considered. 

I will bet my life that every single adult woman in the world has been subjected to at least one of the following (but probably many of them) : 
  • formative years full of incorrect anatomical information
  • media images (most of them actually) that depict female orgasms causes by things that would never actually cause orgasms for women - these mislead and mis-educate both us and our future partners. 
  • shaming
  • countless (I mean countless) mediocre, unorgasmic acts of partnered sex 
  • rape, assault, or grey area rape-ish behavior from a dude 
  • physical pain during sex (and not the oh- I got a cramp or my hair's under your arm kind - the this shit hurts my vagina/cervix/asshole and I'm in pain - not pleasure at all- but I'll just bear it so he will finally finish kind of pain) 
  • lots (and I mean lots) of sex acts that start out arousing but end up disappointing 
  • situation where faking orgasm seems like the best bet...so he'll finish...so I don't take too long...so it'll be sexy for him, etc 
  • dudes who try too hard to "make us come" but just make us feel bad, annoyed, or obligated to act pleased or please them during sex
  • dudes who compare our sexual capabilities to other women during sexual acts
  • dudes who passive-aggressively or even kinda aggressively nag us until we take part in a sexual act we aren't really interested in (seriously, the amount of sexual nagging a woman gets is ridiculous - even from sweet, well-meaning husbands and boyfriends that we love)
  • generally just too many sexual situations where we know we're supposed to be and expected to be aroused, but we're not...yet we do it anyway, 
  • and so many other craptastic little kicks to our sexual selves.

Do these really happen to women? Yes, all the time. More than you can imagine. Do partners we love contribute to it? Unfortunately, absolutely, even with the best of intentions. Does it train us in various, very personalized, very deep ways to ignore/shutdown/agonize over our desire and arousal? You bet. Does that ignoring/shutting down/agonizing over our desire and arousal affect our ability to orgasm? Of course.We women get broken in various degrees and various styles concerning our sexuality and in ways that men are not - and probably can't fully understand. 

I know I sound very morbid and negative right now, but I know there is also a lot of joy and awesomeness in female sexual lives too. I actually think that the female sex drive and capability for orgasm is quite strong given the shit we collectively put up with while continuing to find ways of orgasming and enjoying our sexual experiences. 

I'm just being honest about the fact that women have way more sexual experiences where an orgasm happened only for our partner, where we weren't aroused, where we expected something much, much better than what actually happened. and/or where we, for whatever reason, felt more obligated to be a part of it rather than really desiring to be a part of it. The more of those we have, the less sexy the possibility of sex seems, and our desire and ability to become aroused is affected. 

So to me it makes a lot of sense that often women in partnered situations tend to need "more" to become aroused (which directly affects her ability to orgasm) than men do. Another person + sexual situation does not say to her body's memory "oooh arousing," quite as forcefully and easily as the male's. Depending on the situation and the woman's unique sexual history, it could actually bring up specifically un-arousing feelings even if it seems like it should be opposite..

However, masturbation (and by this I mean a sex act completely free of another person's presence and pressures), I think, can be a very different story. There is no expectations placed on us by another person. There is no doing it when you don't want to. There is no allowing it to be physically painful. There is no feeling unsafe (well at least I assume there is way way less of those things), and thus a woman's body more associates this situation with arousal, and if arousal is more readily available, so is the orgasm. So, without a partner involved, I imagine most women orgasm quicker and easier, and that may be why scientific studies of ladies masturbating to orgasm seems to not match what people see or experience in bed with women.

All that said, it is still true that women's bodies are not less capable of orgasm and that "rubbing one out" (however she does this) is still a quite sure-fire bet for orgasm with another person. All the ways we ladies get broken over the years uniquely complicates our relationship with orgasm, but it doesn't negate those points. We women, that already have all these small sexual breaks, have to continue on our personal paths of finding ways to fully enjoy our sexual lives. However, my biggest dream is that the knowledge and empowerment that I hope the movie gives will spare younger females many of the craptastic aspects of partnered sex that have broke us older folks.


101 Laws of Cliteracy Revisited

Cliteracy! Clit literacy, ya'll!

 I've been thinking lately about artist, Sophia Wallace's Cliteracy Campaign. It's truly on point. I wrote more about it in a blog post when I first heard about it HERE. A big part of it are these posters that have 101 Laws of Cliteracy. She is trying to point out how ignorant our culture is about the main organ of female sexual pleasure - the clitoris, and how much we completely ignore and deny that ignorance. Many of these 101 Laws are exactly the bold, orgasm equality things that need to be said. She is honestly one of the only other people out there saying these things in such a blunt straight-forward manner.

Cheers to Sophia Wallace and The 101 Laws of Cliteracy! Below are some of the posters, but you can check out more of my faves on my first post about this.


My Class, Questioned

I'm always checking my pageviews and stuff for this blog. I like seeing how many people are coming here and why. I can look at words and phrases people search to get them here (like HERE and HERE), and I can also see links to pages that bring people to my posts. A lot of times it's a Google search page or a Reddit post or stuff like that - stuff I know about. However, sometimes I find a strange one. Sometimes it's a blog or comment or something out there on the interwebs that talked about or linked to one of my posts. It's like Christmas when I find one of these. 

For 1, it assures me that at least one person out there reads my strange ladygasm ramblings, and 2, it's incredibly exciting to think that someone liked it at least enough to share it (seriously, it makes me straight up giddy).

So, this happened a couple days ago, and the circumstances of this link and the comments were pretty much awesome. My class was called into question. It was a thread on The Digital Fix, and they were talking about the movie Blue is the Warmest Color. Someone had said they just saw it and really liked it and then the conversation went a variety of places, but one place was to the controversy around the explicit and long lesbian sex scenes. It was started in October of last year and so it's a fairly old thread with comments trickling in towards the end - which was were I saw the link. I'll just quote it all here.

driver8  28-05-2014, 08:49 
As we were discussing earlier in the thread, I think it's a missed opportunity and wish the sex scenes were less porny and more realistic.  
Here's a good new review specifically of the sex scenes - Blue is the Warmest Color - TheSSL Review 
From an excellent blog by the director of Science Sex and the Ladies (2013) [IMDB] - a documentary that attempts to dispel the Hollywood myths about p-in-v sex. 
We blog critically on a specific intersection of science, sexuality, and feminism; particularly paying attention to how female sexual response is discussed, portrayed, and studied in our culture. So...if you're interested in science, sex, lady stuff, or indie movie making...this is the blog for you. 
Ratfink  28-05-2014, 09:40 
It's a dreadful review. Rating a film in vulvas? Yeah, that's not tacky at all. 
driver8  28-05-2014, 10:10 
hehe ... well it's not a film-review site, it's a sex blog ! And you didn't even mention that it only reviews the sex scenes and not the movie as a whole! :) 
Ratfink  28-05-2014, 10:19 
Yeah, I probably shouldn't have clicked at work.. But any site that reviews only sex scenes is itself tacky, even when written from a feminist perspective. 
I honestly do not get the fuss over this film - it was three hours of boring. The sex scenes were nothing. Their relationship was not in the slightest bit interesting. I found the whole thing the height of tedium. 
baloobas  28-05-2014, 16:18 
Originally Posted by Ratfink  
I honestly do not get the fuss over this film - it was three hours of boring. The sex scenes were nothing. Their relationship was not in the slightest bit interesting. I found the whole thing the height of tedium. 
You sir, have a cold, cold heart. I bet you laughed when Bambi's mother got shot.

 So, this is what I want to say about this.

1. driver8 - I don't know who you are, but you said my blog was excellent. I rarely hear anything about my blog, so this was just plain lovely. You get a full 5 vulva rating for bringing my SSL review into a thread (!)(!)(!)(!)(!). If you contact me at trisha at ancmovies dott com I'll send you a free, limited edition cast and crew copy of Science, Sex and the Ladies. Hopefully you'll still read the blog after you see the movie. :) (this offer stands even if you really do live in Maldives like your profile says.)

2. Ratfink - you cranky ol' dog you! I know you didn't like that slow artsy French movie, and I get it. Honestly, even though I liked the movie, I could have done without the chewing sounds Adele would sometimes make. We can't take our frustration out on others though. Now, I'm not gonna argue that rating films in vulvas or reviewing only the female orgasm and masturbation parts of a movie is exactly high class, but I'm partial to it and it kinda goes with the whole lady-gasms-are-depicted-ridiculously-too-often-in-the-media-and-we-need-to-recognize-this vibe of the blog so it's staying. I'd love if you could come to terms with that, but for now, I'm going to have to give your comment a 2 out of 5 vulva rating (!)(!). Your tone was just too flippant for my taste, but you did seem to read at least a little of the blog, so that counts for something.

3. Baloobas, I believe you were the fella who started the thread. You just wanted to share and discuss a movie you greatly enjoyed. I respect that - even if ol' cranky Ratfink doesn't.

Thanks again driver8! And to anyone else out there, feel free to let me know if you see or post links to my blog. I don't always catch them, but I do adore them.

***UPDATE 7/29/2014**** Driver8 posted this link onto the thread above and Ratfink, you classy ol' dog you, was quite cool and thoughtful about it all. I have to give it up. I'd like to up the vulva rating. I really would, but unfortunately a vulva rating can absolutely not be changed under any circumstances once issued. Ratfink's reply is below, but you can check it all HERE

Ratfink  28-07-2014, 16:35
That was nicer than expected.
I feel I should address a few points though. Firstly, yes, I am a cranky old dog - guilty as charged. And I'm often flippant. However, I didn't have an issue with it being a 'slow, artsy French movie' as was implied - I watch a lot of films that fall under that category - I had an issue because I spent three hours with characters I felt no compassion or affinity for. I recently watched the three hour director's cut of Betty Blue, having only previously seen the theatrical cut, and that was a far more invigorating, passionate dissection of a doomed relationship, with a star-making performance from BĂ©atrice Dalle. Point being I think the sex scenes oversold an underwhelming character drama. 
But I digress. Had I read the post leading to the review, or the review itself, properly, I may not have responded so critically. Hard to say, I can be cranky, but I doff my cap to Tricia in apology and respectfully accept the poor vulva rating.


Smart Bitches, Trashy Books Reviews Science, Sex and The Ladies

Science, Sex and the Ladies got its first real review - not an interview with us movie makers or anything like that, but a real review. I've been waiting for one of these, and I'm super excited with the outcome. I'm particularly excited because of the site we were reviewed on - Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, which mostly deals with Romance Novels (all of the romance, none of the bullshit).

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

I don't read romance novels, or really anything much except non-fiction books about sex, but a friend and SSL guest blogger Kat Van Sass, an avid romance reader, got me on the SBTB train when she SSL Reviewed a book SBTB recommended that totally had some realistic ladygasming. She also led me to a funny orgasms-in-romance-novels thread on SBTB that I blogged about. Anyway, these SBTB ladies pull no punches, and that, my friends, makes a good review. 

When I saw they sometimes review movies, I looked through their bloggers and found the one who's reviewing interests most matched the movie and sent her the info (she also writes the blog Geek Girl In Love). She, surprisingly, wrote back and said she'd do it. (Seriously the amount on non-responsiveness I get is astronomical, and I will ever appreciate this woman for taking time out of her life to randomly review this weirdly styled, controversial, somewhat explicit movie by nobody, with nobody famous in it). I told her going in that I understood a review didn't mean a good review... I mean I read their FAQ on the subject. They pointed out that most of the grades are in the C range and gave some C, D and F reviews to read.
Read those reviews. Now imagine we were saying those things about your book. Imagine Candy nitpicking on stupid details ("Morphine wasn't isolated until the 1800s!" "Why are people in 18th-century England saying 'Okay?'") and Sarah tearing your character a new one for being incredibly stupid. Imagine us calling the hero a fucking asshat, and the heroine Tonya Harding on crack — MORE crack than she normally smokes, even. Does the thought make you want to puke? Enrage you? Make your stomach twist? You might want to think twice about sending your book to us. If you've read those reviews, and you're SURE you can tolerate the level of bitchiness and snark we're going to level on it if we decide it's bad, or even if it's just mediocre, then go right ahead.
So, I went ahead. Feel free to read it HERE. We got a B+ which is better than Maleficent (B) but worse than HER (A) - (which was also SSL reviewed BTW). What I really appreciate about this review was that she got that "The main premise of SS&L is that no one has ever scientifically documented a vaginal orgasm – that is, an orgasm that does not involve stimulation of the clitoris." She got that the movie was about how this obsession our culture has with vag-gasms has an affect on us all. 

Granted she let us know that she got it because we rather annoyingly said the whole vag-gasms-haven't-been-recorded-scientifically thing a million times, but strangely we get feedback way too often that sort of completely ignores this major point from the movie. More often than I'd like, the focus for people seems to shine on the idea that kids should be taught more comprehensively about sex or that we should all be more sex positive -  but the whole vaginal-orgasms-don't-really-exist thing seems to get swept under the rug. 

Like, I've said before, there is a whole lot of stuff in SSL, and it's always surprising to me what different people tend to focus on, but I'd really like to have more focus on discussing if I am on the right track or way off base with this statement about vaginal orgasms. It's the controversial part. It's the part that is different from the status quo most-women-need-clitoral-stimulation-of-course-but-certainly-some-women-must-have-gSpot/vaginal/cervical-orgasms way of talking that dominates the discussion now. It's the part I want people to start thinking about, and I LOVE that this reviewer brought that up. I don't know if she fully agreed or not, but she got it and she talked about it. That's all I ask.

I don't mind if research comes along at some point that shows I'm off my rocker, but I think it is a HUGE idea to consider. What if...just for a second consider what if it really were true that the only way women orgasm is from stimulation of the clitoral glans-however that gets done (in the same way that men only orgasm from stimulation of the penis). Just...what if? What would that mean about our current sexual culture? How incredibly off-base would our understanding of female sexuality and females in general be? With our scientific understanding as it is now, it's something worth considering, and I just want that conversation to start happening.

Thanks again to Geek Girl In Love and Smart Bitches Trashy Books. Now, where's the next review...???